New York Mets: Bret Mitchel

Morning Briefing: Awaiting Niese verdict

June, 21, 2013

FIRST PITCH: While the recent hype is rightfully about Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler, David Wright understands Jonathon Niese is an integral piece, too.

So the Mets will hope for the best when Niese gets his left shoulder examined Friday by team doctors in New York.

“You talk about the electric stuff of both Harv and Wheeler, but then Niese I think is a front-end-type guy when he’s healthy and he’s right,” Wright said. “Whether it’s injuries or just inconsistencies, he’s very, very underrated. When he’s on, he’s as tough as anybody from the left side.”

The Mets, meanwhile, awake today in the City of Brotherly Love, where they face the Philadelphia Phillies this weekend.

Jeremy Hefner (1-6, 3.96 ERA) opposes NL loss leader Cole Hamels (2-10, 4.40) in Friday’s 7:05 p.m. series opener.

Read the series preview here.

Friday’s news reports:

• Niese appears headed to the disabled list after experiencing pain in his cranky pitching shoulder during the fourth inning Thursday. Greg Burke is expected to join the Mets this weekend in Philadelphia from Triple-A Las Vegas, a source told As a result of Niese’s shoulder issue, the Mets have found an unattractive way to trim the rotation from six to five starters.

Elsa/Getty ImagesJon Niese's shoulder will be examined today in New York.

Writes columnist David Lennon in Newsday:

According to Sandy Alderson's 2014 blueprint, Jonathon Niese figured to be the ideal building block.

Left-handed. Twenty-six years old. Under the Mets' control through 2016, with two additional option years, and roughly $24 million guaranteed.

All Niese had to do this season was continue being Jonathon Niese, and the Mets would feel confident about slotting him between Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler. But after the dynamic duo lived up to the hype this week, the dream scenario veered off course last night when Niese left in the fourth inning with what the Mets described as "left shoulder discomfort."

Read more in the Post, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Record, Times, Newsday and

• Wright homered twice, Josh Satin had the go-ahead RBI and Josh Edgin retired Jason Heyward for the final out of the eighth after inheriting the tying run on third base as the Mets beat the Braves, 4-3, Thursday at Turner Field. The Mets won the rubber game of the five-game set, becoming the first visiting team this season to win a series in Atlanta.

• After a spirited pregame chat with his former college coach, who is now managing Triple-A Tucson, Ike Davis homered twice, doubled and drove in three runs Thursday for Las Vegas. Terry Collins said Davis is making an effort to reduce the hitch in his swing while working with hitting coach George Greer as well as Wally Backman. Read more in the Post, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Newsday and Record.

• Kevin Plawecki belted a three-run homer in his first career Florida State League at-bat and St. Lucie beat Palm Beach, 8-6. Plawecki, Jayce Boyd and Bret Mitchell had been promoted from Savannah to St. Lucie before Thursday’s game. Brooklyn posted its first win of the season behind John Gant’s five scoreless innings. Read the full minor league recap here.

• MCU Park, home of the Brooklyn Cyclones, was hit hard by Superstorm Sandy. The extensive ballpark refurbishment included a new artificial turf field, which replaced natural grass. That will allow the team to more easily host other events. Writes Dave Caldwell in the Journal about the days after the storm:

When Billy Harner, the team's director of communications, walked into his office, he first noticed "the obvious stuff," like photos that had been hanging on the wall were on the ground, covered in grime.

"When I picked up one photo that was of sentimental value to me -- a photo of Shea Stadium that my father had hanging in his office before he passed away -- I saw my keyboard underneath the poster," Harner said. "Laying across the keyboard was a shrimp, antennas and all."

• Jay Schreiber in the Times sees a light at the end of the tunnel for the Mets.

From the bloggers … spotlights left-hander Steven Matz, who quietly is having a solid season at Savannah. … Metsmerized suggests Harvey could become the best pitcher the Mets have ever drafted, and wouldn't swap him for any other pitcher in the game. … John Delcos at Mets Report recommends the Mets enjoy Harvey and Wheeler and the rest will take care of itself.

BIRTHDAYS: Lefty reliever Jeff Musselman, who was acquired from the Toronto Blue Jays on July 31, 1989 for Mookie Wilson, turns 50.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: How concerned are you about Jon Niese’s shoulder?

Minors 5.18.13: Cuan 7 scoreless in FSL rout

May, 18, 2013
LAS VEGAS 9, OMAHA 4: Andrew Brown went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer, four RBIs and scored three times. Josh Satin went 3-for-5 and scored twice while upping his average to .313. Catcher Francisco Pena went 0-for-4 with a run scored in his Triple-A debut. Starter Carlos Torres (2-3) allowed four runs on six hits and two walks in six innings. He allowed two homers. Greg Peavey and Sean Henn combined for three no-hit, scoreless relief innings as the 51s (20-20) returned to .500. Satin started at first base, while Brown played right field. Box

PORTLAND 10, BINGHAMTON 7: Matt Spring blasted a walk-off grand slam in the ninth as B-Mets closer Jeff Walters suffered his first blown save and Binghamton (23-19) had a five-game winning streak end. Bidding for his 12th save with a 7-6 lead, Walters

surrendered consecutive singles to Xander Bogaerts and Tony Thomas. He rebounded with two strikeouts, but walked Shannon Wilkerson. Having already homered in the fourth, Spring took a 1-0 offering from Walters and went deep again, belting the slam. In the first, Danny Muno led off with his team-leading 27th walk, stole second and scored when Cory Vaughn singled. Similarly, Blake Forysthe walked to start the second, stole second, took third on a passed ball and scored on Wilfredo Tovar’s single for a 2-0 lead. Heiker Meneses answered for the Sea Dogs in the second against Mark Cohoon with a two-out RBI triple. Meneses scored when Cohoon uncorked his first wild pitch of the season. Spring launched a two-run homer in the fourth to give Portland a 4-2 lead. A half-inning later, Josh Rodriguez cut the B-Mets' deficit to one with an RBI single. He then scored on a throwing error by Spring. Portland retook the lead in the sixth against reliever Chase Huchingson. The southpaw paid for hitting Derrik Gibson with an 0-2 pitch when Peter Hissey ripped a tiebreaking triple. Thomas added a solo homer in the seventh. Trailing by two, Binghamton rallied against Brock Huntzinger. With the score 6-5 in the eighth, Huntzinger rebounded to get two outs. But with runners at second and third, Tovar then sent a roller to shortstop. Gibson booted the grounder, allowing the tying and go-ahead runs to score. Shawn Teufel preserved the lead with a scoreless eighth before Walters (0-1) faltered. Binghamton’s last walk-off loss on a homer also came in Portland, on July 20, 2011 (Mitch Dening off John Lujan). Box

ST. LUCIE 10, BRADENTON 0: Angel Cuan pitched seven scoreless innings and Aderlin

Rodriguez had four hits and two RBIs. The Mets (24-16) pounded out 16 hits and snapped a three-game losing streak. Rodriguez had an RBI double in the first to open the scoring. Rylan Sandoval added an RBI single to extend the lead. T.J. Rivera's RBI double in the second gave the Mets a 3-0 lead. Dustin Lawley and Rodriguez hit back-to-back homers in the third. Matt Reynolds and Charley Thurber each had two hits and drove in a run. The Mets had all nine starters record at least one hit. Cuan limited the Marauders to three hits in seven innings while recording six strikeouts and walking one. Estarlin Morel followed with two scoreless innings. Box

SAVANNAH 3, AUGUSTA 1: Matt Koch (2-2) limited Augusta to one unearned run in six innings and Jake Kuebler and Bret Mitchel combined for three scoreless relief innings. The lone run against Koch came in the first inning, after he surrendered a leadoff single to Jesus Galindo. He advanced to second on a throwing error by second baseman Yucarybert De La Cruz and scored on a pair of groundouts. Kevin Plawecki drove in one run, scored twice and twice was hit by pitches. Savannah (23-17) pulled even in the fourth when Jayce Boyd doubled and scored on Plawecki's single. Two innings later, the Gnats took the lead when Plawecki was hit by a pitch, advanced to third on a pair of errors, then scored on a wild pitch. Plawecki again was hit by a pitch and scored in the eighth. Mitchel earned his seventh save. Box

Compiled from team reports

Minors 5.16.13: Lara tosses 8 scoreless

May, 16, 2013
OMAHA 5, LAS VEGAS 4: Andrew Brown tripled and scored on Wilmer Flores' groundout to open the ninth, but the 51s ultimately stranded the bases loaded as Donnie Joseph struck out Kirk Nieuwenhuis. Omaha had taken a 5-3 lead in the eighth on run-scoring groundout against Josh Edgin in the southpaw's Pacific Coast League debut after a promotion from Binghamton. Starter D.J. Mitchell (1-1) surrendered four runs on 10 hits and a walk in five innings as his ERA swelled to 6.75. Eric Campbell went 3-for-3 with two RBIs in the loss. Flores also had two RBIs for the 51s (18-20). Box

BREVARD COUNTY 4, ST. LUCIE 3: T.J. Mittelstaedt had a walk-off RBI double in the ninth against T.J. Chism. The Mets (23-15) dropped three of four games in the series. Noah

Syndergaard received a no-decision despite striking out a season-high 10 batters in 6 2/3 innings while walking none. He allowed seven hits and two runs. Throw out an April 18 start in which Syndergaard allowed seven runs in three innings and he otherwise has a 1.30 ERA in seven starts. Cameron Garfield's two-run triple in the sixth tied the score at 2 against Syndergaard. Rylan Sandoval had a bases-loaded two-run single in the top half of that inning. Hamilton Bennett pitched a scoreless relief inning and had three strikeouts. Randy Fontanez suffered the loss. He allowed one hit and struck out two in an inning. Chism came on in relief with a runner at second and two outs in the ninth before allowing the game-winning hit. Jenrry Mejia will make the start on a major league rehab assignment for the Mets as Friday's starter at Bradenton. Box

SAVANNAH 6, AUGUSTA 0 (11 innings): The Gnats ended a scoreless duel with six runs in the 11th, highlighted by a pinch-hit two-run single from Maikis De La Cruz. A pair of throwing errors by Augusta third baseman Mitchell Delfino resulted in four unearned runs. Starter Rainy Lara surrendered only two hits and a walk in eight innings. He combined with Bret Mitchell (1-1) and Beck Wheeler on the four-hit shutout. Lara retired the final 11 batters he faced and shaved his ERA to 1.17, which ranks second in the South Atlantic League. Box

Compiled from team reports

Minors 4.12.13: B-Mets' Vaughn drives in 4

April, 13, 2013
COLORADO SPRINGS 6, LAS VEGAS 1: Starter Carlos Torres was charged with five runs (three earned) on nine hits and three walks in three innings. Reese Havens' pinch-hit single in the fifth scored Jamie Hoffmann with Las Vegas' lone run. Josh Satin (.444) went 0-for-4 to lose a season-opening eight-game hitting streak. Box

BINGHAMTON 15, NEW HAMPSHIRE 7: The B-Mets tied a franchise record by scoring 11 times in an inning. Trailing 5-1 entering the bottom of the fourth, Rhyne Hughes got the

onslaught started by launching his first homer this season. Hughes was the first of nine consecutive batters to reach base. They all came around to score. Binghamton collected seven hits and used five walks and two Fisher Cat fielding errors in the 11-run frame. New Hampshire had started the game with three consecutive hits en route to two first-inning runs. New Hampshire ultimately produced 18 hits, but left 16 men on base. Binghamton’s first run was scored in the second inning as Cory Vaughn doubled home Juan Centeno. Centeno and Vaughn finished with three hits and three runs apiece. Vaughn also had four RBIs. Mark Cohoon (2-0) got the win in relief. He pitched two innings after replacing starter Tyler Pill (4 IP, 10 H, 5 R). Cohoon surrendered one run on four hits. The B-Mets also scored 11 runs in an inning on July 23, 1994 against the Albany-Colonie Yankees. The 15 runs are the most scored by the B-Mets since plating 17 on Aug. 16, 2011 against New Britain. Box

ST. LUCIE 6, BRADENTON 5: (12 innings) Cam Maron delivered the decisive fielder's choice RBI in the 12th, scoring Charley Thurber. Hamilton Bennett earned the save. T.J. Rivera drove in three runs and Travis Taijeron went 4-for-5 with a walk. T.J. Chism suffered a blown save in the ninth on a two-out RBI double by Carlos Mesa. St. Lucie starter Jacob deGrom allowed four runs in six innings. Box

ROME 5, SAVANNAH 2: Gabriel Ynoa surrendered five runs (four earned) on eight hits and two walks in four innings. Kevin Plawecki went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and RBI in the loss to lift his season batting average to .484. Bret Mitchel, Beck Wheeler and Tim Peterson combined for four no-hit relief innings with seven strikeouts. Box

Compiled from team reports



Daniel Murphy
.289 9 57 79
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
WB. Colon 15
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187